Man Utd boss Solskjaer aims sly dig at Man City ahead of derby

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists he is pleased Manchester United and Manchester City now have regular meetings in the Premier League, after waiting five years as a player to make his derby debut.

The two sides face each other on Saturday at the Etihad, with City 11 points ahead of United in the Premier League.

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Solskjaer made his United debut in 1996 but had to wait five years before playing in his first derby and the United boss was eager to point this out.

At his pre-match press conference, he said: “At least we play every year now. It took many years for me to play my first.

“It’s changed in a way, Manchester City are a better team now than when I was playing.

“Football has changed quite a lot, you were allowed a few more proper tackles with every little angle. With everything being scrutinised now it’s more of a technical, tactical game than physical or mental.

“A derby should be played as a derby, we don’t play basketball and we’re ready if that happens.”

United had significant injury worries heading into the weekend, with Anthony Martial unable to feature against Tottenham on Wednesday due to a muscle injury as well as Paul Pogba’s long-term absence.

Asked for an update on the pair, Solskjaer said: “We hope to have Anthony definitely for part of the game – I’m not sure if he’s able to start.

“Paul probably won’t be [ready], no. As soon as possible, he’s out on the grass training, I said [he’ll be back] in 2019 so hopefully before the New Year.”

 

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